|Location||Khabarovsk Territory, Russia|
|Key exploration projects||Levoberezhny|
|Processing||1.3 Mtpa heap leaching circuit|
|Reserves (JORC)||0.5 Moz GE, 2.5 g/t average grade|
|Resources (JORC)||0.2 Moz GE, 2.5 g/t average grade|
|Production start date||2016|
|Life of mine||2026|
Svetloye is a heap-leach operation that was started up in 2016, and is currently Polymetal’s lowest cost asset with 2019 TCC of US$ 310/GE oz. The planned life of mine is approximately 6 years, with further potential extensions as a result of successful nearby exploration. At Levoberezhny, a satellite property that is anticipated to extend the life of mine at Svetloye, the results of in-fill drilling confirmed the continuity of mineralisation and the viability of using heap-leaching to recover gold.
In 2018, the Company implemented two green energy pilot projects at Svetloye which otherwise relies on diesel gensets: we were the first mining company in Russia to install solar power plant, with a capacity of 1 MW to supply Svetloye main production site, and a wind a wind turbine for 100 kW at the seaport of Unchi — local supply hub for Svetloye. As a result, we expect to generate 1,500 kW*h of environmentally-friendly electricity each year, resulting in a reduction of 640 tonnes in GHG emissions annually.
Svetloye is located in the Okhotsk district of the Khabarovsk Krai in the Far East of Russia. The project lies in unpopulated remote mountainous area with taiga forest in the valleys and tundra covering hilltops.
The deposit was discovered in 1973. Significant exploration was undertaken between 2003 and 2005 with a total of 38 trenches excavated and 28 diamond drillholes drilled. Between 2006 and 2009 further 62 trenches were excavated and 273 diamond drillholes drilled. Total drilling amounted to 42,730 m and total trenching comprised 124,994 m3.
Polymetal acquired Svetloye exploration and mining license in December 2010 for the total consideration of US$ 9.25 million. In 2013 Polymetal drilled 17 diamond drillholes totaling 2,956 m and 33 reverse circulation (RC) drillholes totaling 6,474 m.
The construction at Svetloye has been completed nine months ahead of the original schedule. Total capital expenditure comprised US$ 60 million, which is 33% below initial project estimates, primarily driven by the significant devaluation of the Russian Rouble since the start of construction in 2014. The leaching process commenced on 15 August 2016 and the first 10 Koz of gold were produced at the Merrill Crowe circuit on 29 August 2016.
Gold mineralisation at Svetloye is formed by vuggy silica (secondary quartzite) associated with a high-sulphidation epithermal system. Most of gold mineralisation is very fine grained and disseminated. Gold-bearing silicification occurs as flat lenses or pods, which outcrop at the surface and have true widths of between 20 and 120 m. Higher-grade zones are adjacent to breccias. The oxidation zone develops to a depth of 150 m.
Three ore zones (Emmy, Elena and Tamara) are proposed to be mined at Svetloye. Open pit mining will be conducted by conventional drill-and-blast and truck haulage. The average strip ratio over the life of the mine is 1.4 t/t. The open pits will reach the maximum depth of 130 meters.
Svetloye ore is processed by heap leaching with the pads and the plant located within 5 km from the main pits. Ore is crushed only in warm season to minus 20 mm, mixed with crushed limestone, and stacked by trucks in lifts with the height of 15 meters. Solution from the heap leach pad will be processed through the 400 m3/h capacity Merrill-Crowe plant.
|Ore Reserves||Tonnage, Mt||Gold grade, g/t||Silver grade, g/t||Copper grade, %||GE grade, g/t||Gold, Koz||Silver, Moz||Copper, Kt||GE, Koz|
|Mineral Resources||Tonnage, Mt||Gold grade, g/t||Silver grade, g/t||Copper grade, %||GE grade, g/t||Gold, Koz||Silver, Moz||Copper, Kt||GE, Koz|
- In 2021, exploration activities were carried out at the Svetloye deposit on the flanks of the Lyudmila and Emmy ore zones using surface mining and drilling. 26.4 km of core drill holes and 55,000 m3 of trenches were completed. The 2021 exploration campaign allowed to identify number of mineralization interceptions along the new and previously identified ore bodies on the northern, northeastern and southern flanks of the Emi zone and on the northwestern flanks of the Lyudmila zone. The exploration potential of previously less studied mineralized areas was confirmed. The increase in Ore Reserves based on the results of the exploration campaign (57 Koz of gold) partially compensated for production in 2021. Additional Mineral Resources increased by 45 Koz to 182 Koz.
- In 2022, it is planned to continue exploration activities on the flanks of the deposit to identify new promising mineralization zones and determine new areas of mineralization. Areal geochemical exploration will further study the flanks of the deposit with undelineated gold anomalies.
- In 2021, exploration activities were carried out at the Kulyukli site (1.2 km of drilling and 13,000 m3 of trenches were completed). Ore intersections were identified along the trenches in the Vostochnaya and Perevalnaya zones, which assume a preliminary forecast estimate of
30-60Koz of gold.